I was excited to catch up with one of my former professors today, Christine; it had been over a decade since we last spoke. Once we got on Zoom, it felt like no time had passed.
We got to talking about the books we've found valuable over the years and how we're often inspired by stories from outside our field. As we ended the discussion, Christine added: "We're all just people after all."
Regardless of our profession or industry, we're all just people working with other people. Framed this way, we're acknowledging our nature and inherent commonalities as humans. We're opening the door to learning from one another.
We all have times where we think our experience is unique and that no one else has ever dealt with the same problems in this way. Not only have countless others experienced the same problems but many are experiencing them right now and many others have overcome them.
We resist help because we can't imagine our friend who works in finance could ever understand what it's like to work in a creative agency. They may not be designing for a living but they have clients relying on them. They also have to earn their trust. They have deadlines. They want their manager to let them know how they're doing. They want to be recognized for doing good work. You get the idea.
We're much more alike than we think. When we remember that, the world suddenly becomes an open book and if we dive in, we just might learn a thing or two.